Not that I'm really complaining. The clerk this evening, who was probably young enough to be my son, gave me such a thrill by carding me that I was momentarily without my wits. "Haha! My identification. Very funny. And very nice. But no, I left it in my enormous bag, which only a middle-aged woman would carry, in my car. I have only this ATM card." He really needed some identification. "Don't be silly. I am forty-seven. Give me my gin." The manager, who seemed old enough to know better, was called over for his approval. He squinted, considered my presence, and shook his head. No deal, no gin. "Fine, I can always make it a vodka tonic."
So I left with just groceries, but in the process I enjoyed the laughter of my friend in the next line and the cheering of the fifty-something couple behind me who thought this was without question the greatest thing that could happen to a forty-something mom.
Of course afterward I thought of all the persuasive arguments I could have mounted:
"Look, son. [Raising my glasses] My face might look fairly smooth when I'm staring straight at you, but watch what happens when I smile." [He would recoil in horror and hand over the gin.]But, really, thanks anyway.
"Do you know who my first T.V. crush was? Bobby Sherman. He was very popular. A long time ago." I could have pointed out that I watched him on a black and white television, but that probably would have been too much.
"Do you remember where you were when Ronald Reagan was shot? Oh, that's right, you probably weren't born yet. I was shopping in my college bookstore."
"And during the first moonwalk? No, not Michael Jackson. I am talking about the MOON. Oh, wait—not born yet. I was in the second grade. I was in the fast readers' group, so I went to school later in the morning and I was home to watch it. My favorite cereal was Quisp, named after a space creature eternally in a race with a cowboy named Quake. They had a write-in vote for whether they should get rid of Quake, and they did, so Quisp was considered the winner."
And Dittos jeans? Bonne Bell Lipsmackers? Dolphin shorts? Huarache sandals? COME ON, SON. Only a person of a certain age would have this rarefied knowledge.